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Iranian Women Defy Islamic Dress Code as Anti-Government Protests Sweep Nation

Protests beginning Thursday sparked by economic unrest in Iran have quickly turned into massive demonstrations, not just against economic policy, but against the Islamist controlled government as a whole. These gatherings are the largest form of anti-government demonstrations in the middle eastern country since 2009. Citizens continued demonstrations Saturday in the cities of Teheran, Kermanshah, as well as nearly 20 other locations chanting against Iran's President Hassan Rouhani as well as the Supreme Ayatollah Ali Khamenei


What started as smaller protests against poor economic conditions, allegations of corruption, as well as the Iranian government's involvement in foreign nations has quickly engulfed Iran in the largest showing against the theocratic state in nearly a decade. Labor protests are not abnormal in Iran, but the political and religious nature of these protests have given hope to thousands, if not millions, of people that this dissent shows an opportunity for true reform in the country.

While it is not certain what the Iranian government's response will be to its citizens, the United States warned the Iranian government that the “world is watching” in a series of statements sent out by the President, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and the State Department.


Other United States officials showed support for the protesters as well.

Since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, which established Islamic rule in the once free and prosperous country, women have been historically oppressed. However, brave women are now taking to the streets in defiance of Sharia law. These protests are reminiscent of 1979 when thousands of women publicly condemned the government imposed veiling of women.


In a blow to the Ayatollah, Iranian police announced they would not arrest women who refused to abide by Islamic dress code. “Those who do not observe the Islamic dress code will no longer be taken to detention centers, nor will judicial cases be filed against them,” Tehran police chief General Hossein Rahimi said to the press.

It is unclear how long these protests will occur nor what the outcome will be. TownHall coverage will continue in the following days as more details and events occur.

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